There’s too much stupidity in this world, often solved by overdimensioning.
Strong statements can be easily brought out of context and, applied in entirely different areas, without loosing a pinch of truth. From mobile networks to grocery shopping, abundance is sickening. Excess, just to stay on the safe side or to prepare for the worst case scenario, is a major issue for the human race. From the housewife who cooks for five when only three are at the table and drops that extra bleach, as the whiter the better. To her husband enjoying his massive TV and a powerful car, never used to its full capacity.
Overconsumption is a well known trend in the consumer market. Less perceived and discussed is probably the same issue around infrastructure development. At the end of the day, a human is generally responsible of setting the level where enough is enough so the process can move forward. As complicated as it is to obtain detailed data on specific environments, one can easily question the extension of crop fields, the usage of pesticides, water provisioning or electric network power available to a household: Minimal deviations aggregate on big deltas.
Enough and need are relative to what it is available. Enough and need are the first thing questionable in a booming city like Delhi.
While the monsoon floods the streets, you learn to ration the water bottles left as compliments in a luxurious hotel room.
Sweet mangoes pile up on the free breakfast buffeét but in any case, you’d better stay away from them to avoid getting a Delhi Belly.
One can live surrounded by marble, glass, metal, a bell-boy and 24h-room service. Ironically, the only thing they cannot fix for you is drinkable water from the golden tap. Glass, halogens, bubble-bath and the supply switching off 5 times a day. As you freak out in the middle of the dark, someone will come and explain that the city grows faster than its infrastructures, making generators a major reliable source.
It isn’t growth, but divergence. The rich are fewer, the poor starve as they grow in number. No birth control, an average of 5 kids per family: India will soon surpass China in population. While the new rich tend to claim the privileges the old rich used to enjoy, there is still a ray of hope for a trend shift, with the gap getting smaller and the development, sustainable.
It just takes to wander around alleyways to encounter their small daily pleasures, like sisha-sharing with friends or flying kites in the rooftop.
Everyday Indian life is filled with smart solutions such as the pay as you grow grocery store, where anything from washing powder to coffee is sold in mono-doses, for anyone to afford no matter how small purchasing power they have.
Scarcity makes people smarter.
Maybe we should all start with a small rationing test home. Buy half as what you would usually get. Start the dimensioning bottom up and see how ideas for reuse naturally appear.
This is a post by the David Report contributor Claudia Muñiz García.